Selasa, 17 April 2018

GOVERNMENT NEEDS TO IMPOSE TAX ON E-COMMERCE INDUSTRY

by Andi Abdussalam
         Jakarta, April 17 (Antara) - Transaction trends are currently shifting from the conventional system of direct cash payment to an online cashless system by capitalizing on the latest technology used in online trade or e-commerce activities.
        Hence, the government believes that the e-commerce industry is one of the business sectors having high future prospects, and to this end, it is drafting an e-commerce regulation to ensure equality between conventional and e-commerce traders.
        Vice President Jusuf Kalla (JK) and Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto held a meeting on Thursday to discuss matters related to electronic trade or e-commerce development.
        "JK has just met with the ministers to discuss the roadmap of e-commerce," Hartarto stated at the office of Muhammadiyah, Indonesia's second-largest Muslim organization, in Jakarta on Thursday (April 12).
        "We discussed the idea of imposing a half percent tax on e-commerce," Hartarto remarked.
        The minister noted that the tax will be applied on business entities that have been classified as Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). The SMEs will be given three years before finally following the applicable taxation.

Senin, 16 April 2018

INDONESIA ENHANCES TRADE WITH AFRICAN COUNTRIES

by Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, April 16 (Antara) -  In its efforts to build economic ties and enhance trade  cooperation with African countries, Indonesia hosted a two-day Indonesia-Africa Forum (IAF) to bring nations in the continent closer to trade and economic cooperation.
         Held on April 10-11, the forum facilitated a total trade agreement potential of US$2.3 billion.  On the first day of the forum (April 10), as many as 10 trade agreements valued at $586.56 million were signed while on the second day it managed to record additional trade transactions worth nearly US$500 million.
         "This is a remarkable (achievement) that has been recorded in a short period of time," Indonesian Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita noted in a joint statement with Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi on the sidelines of the IAF in Bali on Wednesday (April 11).
         The IAF also concluded the announcement of business plans from 11 Indonesian companies, with a potential trade value of $1.3 billion.
         The Indonesian government is targeting preferential trade agreement (PTA) with a number of African countries to be completed this year, in order to streamline the flow of goods and services of both sides.

Sabtu, 14 April 2018

FREEPORT EXPECTED TO COMPLETE DIVESTMENT THIS MONTH

 by Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, April 14 (Antara) - The US-based gold and copper mining company PT Freeport Indonesia (FI) is expected to divest 51 percent of its shares this month based on the directives of President Joko Widodo.
        The government has assigned state-owned mining holding firm PT Indonesia Asahan Aluminium (Inalum) to hold negotiations with PT FI on the divestment of its shares.
        Inalum President Director Budi Gunadi Sadikin confirmed that his company is now closer to completing negotiations on the divestment deals.
        He stated that the divestment of PT FI is in the final stage.
         "Yes, we are handling the divestment process that has reached the final stage," Sadikin had informed reporters in Bogor, West Java, on Saturday (Apr 14).
   Sadikin did not elaborate on how the divestment process had reached the final stage but only gave an implicit answer. Sadikin did not explain the next steps to be taken nor the process of the final negotiations.

         Earlier, Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Ignasius Jonan noted that no report was received from PT Inalum on results of the negotiations with PT FI over the divestment of 51 percent shares.  

Jumat, 13 April 2018

GOVERNMENT CONTINUES TO DEVELOP RENEWABLE ENERGY

 by Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, April 13 (Antara) - The energy sector is one of the crucial fields that has been instrumental in driving economic activities and boosting growth in the country.
         Today, energy is no longer merely a commodity but has served as a driving force for economic development. Hence, to replace the depleting conventional energy sources, the Indonesian government is going all out to exploit its new and renewable energy potential.
         With the shift in paradigm from energy as a commodity to energy as a driver, economic growth must be complemented with reforms in the oil and gas industry.
         "We are now working hard to attract as many investors as possible to work jointly with us in conducting exploration activities, increasing production, and developing energy infrastructure," Deputy Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Archandra Tahar noted in Jakarta on Thursday (Apr 12).
         Indonesia is confident of being able to exploit more of its renewable energy in future, with its measured program to achieve its energy mix targets.
         "Indonesia should ensure it still has the opportunity to enjoy more than what it is having today, " Tahar stated at a workshop on the energy sector.

Kamis, 12 April 2018

SEAPLANES TO REINFORCE INDONESIAN TOURISM

by Andi Abdussalam
           Jakarta, April 12 (Antara) - In a bid to support the development of tourism, Indonesia, comprising over 17 thousand islands but still lacking adequate number of airports, plans to operate seaplanes to serve its tourism destinations.
         The government is also currently preparing regulations on operating amphibious aircraft that could serve as a means of public transportation and support development of the tourism industry in the country.
         Last January, a seaplane had been readied to transport foreign tourists from Batam Island near Singapore to one of the country's famous tourism destinations: Pulau Bawah Resort in Riau Islands Province.
         The plan to operate amphibious aircraft was recently disclosed by Chairman of the Maritime Tourism Development Acceleration Team Indroyono Soesilo. For instance, an amphibious aircraft type Viking Twin Otter-400 seaplane, with aircraft code DHC-400, was ready to transport tourists to Pulau Bawah Resort from the Hang Nadim Airport of Batam.

Rabu, 11 April 2018

RI HOSTS IAF TO FOSTER COOPERATION WITH AFRICAN COUNTRIES

By Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, Feb 10 (Antara) - Indonesia has over the past few years focused its attention to the African continent and intensified its cooperation with African nations.
         As part of its commitment to strengthening partnership with African countries, the Indonesian government is hosting a two-day Indonesia-Africa Forum (IAF) on Tuesday and Wednesday (April 10-11).
         The forum, which is being attended by 500 representatives from 46 African countries and international organizations, served as a historical event, as it is organized for the first time and will serve as a platform to forge stronger ties with African countries.
         "If Indonesia and Africa successfully promote the cooperation, we can show the world that cooperation among developing nations can be realized," Vice President Jusuf Kalla stated, while opening the IAF at the Bali Nusa Dua Convention Center, on Tuesday afternoon.
         Kalla believes that Indonesia-Africa cooperation will have bright prospects, particularly in the fields of trade and investment.

Sabtu, 07 April 2018

GOVERNMENT TO TURN SWAMPS INTO PRODUCTIVE LANDS

 By Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, April 7 (Antara) - Indonesia has an extensive area of 33.39 million hectares of swamplands, with potential for cultivation to ensure the country's food security and sovereignty.
         Agriculture Minister Amran Sulaiman said that based on a pilot project in Ogan Ilir of South Sumatra Province, the productivity of swamplands could reach 6 to 7 tons per hectare. The pilot project could yield 2 to 3 tons per hectare at the beginning, but after three planting seasons, it could produce 6 to 7 tons per hectare.
         Hence, the government is optimistic that one million hectares of swamplands could yield a commercial benefit of about Rp60 trillion, on the basis of the three-time cropping index a year.
         According to Lowland Data Center, http://www.pusdatarawa.or.id, the swamp areas in Indonesia are spread over several islands, namely Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, and Papua. Indonesia's swampland areas comprise 20.09 million hectares (60.2 percent of tidal land and 13.3 million hectares or 39.8 percent of non-tidal swamp land (lebak).